Comedy bar’s low, but the film’s lack of ambition is one of its charms

It’s 1968. Apollo 11 is on its way to the Moon. But the CIA, fearing a PR disaster should a moon landing prove unsuccessful, dispatches to London a gruff, very lethal and somewhat unhinged agent suffering from Vietnam War PTSD (Ron Perlman, who should do comedy more often) along with a suitcase full of cash. His mission: locate and hire Stanley Kubrick—who had just made 2001: A Space Odyssey—to quickly and clandestinely put together some footage of a fake lunar landing in case NASA fails. Once there, he mistakes a failed band manager (Harry Potter’s Rupert Grint) for the famed director’s agent and forks over the cash, which is almost immediately confiscated by some loan shark goons. Cultures (authoritarian, hippie, mobster) clash.

This is far from a major motion picture, but you have to agree that the premise is original, and skewering conspiracy theorists is always fun. True, the comedy bar is set pretty low, and some of the running gags outstay their welcome. But the film’s lack of ambition is one of its charms; it just wants to have fun. I had a good time. (94 min)